August 2022 LEGO News Roundup

Let’s celebrate the 90th anniversary of The LEGO Group with some great articles from around the web.

August is typically quiet at The LEGO Group Headquarters in Billund, the traditional vacation month for many Europeans. This year is a bit different — The LEGO Group celebrated it’s 90th Anniversary by declaring August 10 as World Play Day 🙂.

The anniversary was celebrated earlier in the month with the release of two nostalgia-fueled heavy hitters, #10305 Lion Knights’ Castle celebrating a rich history of LEGO Castle sets (read our review), and #10497 Galaxy Explorer honoring the Classic Space by re-interpreting one of the most iconic sets in that theme.

The LEGO fan community also joined in the festivities, with articles celebrating 90 years of LEGO. In particular, Richard Jones at The Rambling Brick published a series of short articles highlighting the key innovations in each of the 9 decades since The LEGO Group was founded in 1932.

Key moments captured include:

I was unable to celebrate the anniversary this year, as I joined in the European tradition of vacationing in August with a family trip to the Canadian Rockies. (While LEGO was not the focus of the trip, our son brought a bag of DUPLO bricks that he enjoyed building with at every chance he could get.)

New at Brick Architect

Review: LEGO #40568 Paris & #40569 London Postcards

Review: LEGO #40568 Paris & #40569 London Postcards

I’m still putting the finishing touches on our review of #42145 Airbus H175 Rescue Helicopter – although I am already happy to recommend it to folks who want a large and intricate Technic build.

MOC of the Month

Sometimes, a clever play on words offers the inspiration needed to create something expressive and delightful; why shouldn’t a Bulldozer re-examine it’s namesake, anyways?

Ferdinand the Bulldozer, by Maddison Stapleton.

Ferdinand the Bulldozer, by Maddison Stapleton.

Through my 3 year-old son I have regained a childlike fondness for Heavy Equipment, which Portland LEGO Artist Maddison Stapleton exploited to great effect in this small, colorful model. It leaves me wanting for a children’s book or cartoon adaptation. (The model was inspired by the “Construction” theme this year at Brickfair, VA.)

Upcoming Events

  • September 29 – October 2, 2022 – BrickCon 2022
    Adult fans can participate in the longer four-day convention, or visit the Public Expo on the weekend (tickets available soon for around $12).
    Register to attend virtual ($25) or in-person ($85) convention at afol.brickcon.org

Exciting new sets for AFOLs

The majority of sets for Holiday 2022 have already been released, but there are a handful of new sets this month of interest to the AFOL community.

First of all, I wanted to make readers aware that they are on sale now (since they frequently sell out). We aim to post our annual review of all five of the 2022 LEGO Advent calendars in October, but you if you have a ‘must have’ set you might want to buy it now.

This year's "Marvel" advent calendar focuses on the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special. (Photo: The LEGO Group)

This year’s “Marvel” advent calendar focuses on the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special. (Photo: The LEGO Group)

Given the recent talk of inflation, you probably won’t be surprised to see a price hike in USA, with licensed advent calendars up to $45 (from $40) and unlicensed sets up to $35 (from $30). European customers are getting a better deal: €35 and €25 respectively (even though the EUR is exactly 1:1 to the USD at this time).

  • #21335 Motorized Lighthouse
    Initial opinion about the latest LEGO Ideas set has not been kind — not because it’s a bad set, but because the price seems awfully high.
    2065 pieces, $300, available now at LEGO.com
  • #76405 Hogwarts Express – Collectors’ Edition
    If you love Harry Potter (and are able to separate the art from the artist), you might ‘need’ to add this UCS-style interpretation of the iconic Hogwarts Express and Platform 9 ¾ to your collection. (The shallow profile and short stature make it an unusually easy to display on a bookshelf for such a large set.)
    5129 pieces, $500, available now at LEGO.com
  • Series 23 Collectible Minifigure Series
    I rarely highlight the Collectible Minifigure series since they often include some pretty lacklustre figures, but this series is absolutely packed with great figs so you can’t go wrong… I want a Turkey, Dragon, Reindeer, and Wolf Man.
    $5, (or $30 for six-pack) available now at LEGO.com
Collectible Minifigure Series 23 is especially good.

Collectible Minifigure Series 23 is especially good.

Best articles from around the web

Here are some highlights this month from around the web – Happy reading!

LEGO Ideas is one of the shining beacons of LEGO’s portfolio, and I think it’s a great disservice to LEGO fans if sets that are selected become increasingly out of reach.

Jay’s Brick Blog

Design and Architecture:

I’m pivoting this section of my newsletter to explore broader topics beyond LEGO, with a focus on design and architecture. I hope you find this content half as interesting as I do.

  • 99% Vernacular
    To celebrate their 500th episode, the team at 99% Invisble created three episodes of short stories highlighting some of their favorite regional design quirks. Because they are all worth listening to, I’ve highlighted my favorite mini-stories from each episode below…
    —99% Invisible
    • Volume 1 (38:09) – The second story offers a fun account of the practical and aesthetic benefits of the A-frame design for cabins in wintry locations. The final story interrogates the complex history of the Southern Front Porch, especially as it relates to racial tensions in that region of the United States.
    • Volume 2 (35:19) – The third story introduced me to an architectural tradition I have limited awareness of – the transitional indoor/outdoor space known as the Lanais which was born in Hawaii but also became a fixture in Florida homes.
    • Volume 3 (38:52) – The first story explains how the heavy concrete roof with a stairstepped pattern serves multiple roles in making Bermuda resilient to tropical storms and drought. The third story offers a somewhat absurd exploration of how the range of colors that can be considered “earth tones” have spiraled into legal disputes in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Thanks for reading our August LEGO News Roundup. Don’t want to miss anything? Subscribe to the Brick Architect mailinglist to receive the latest LEGO news in your email!

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